Do models have to pay the agency?

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While legitimate agencies will charge models for certain expenses such as comp cards and web presence, no legitimate agency will charge models to register to be represented or force models to use the agency's photographers for portfolio images. Legitimate agencies will present models with a list of approved photographers and the model hires the photographer directly. In some cases, a photographer may test the model for free but this should not be expected. California State Labor Code prevents talent agencies from collecting registration fees or bundling services such as photography. Other States may have their own laws. Check with your local labor department. Be wary of fake agencies who offer modeling lessons, modeling certificates, or charge huge fees to for picture packages.

Models should not be asking if legitimate agencies require models to pay for anything. Both legitimate and scam agencies will require models to pay for expenses. The real question models should be asking is "Who are the agencies making money from? Models or clients?"

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